Funding and Autonomy
The Homer Township Road District is a separate Governmental Entity. It is managed by the Homer Township Road District Commissioner. It is funded by Local Real Estate Taxes and State Motor Fuel Taxes. Although the Township Supervisor and Board of Trustees “Certify” the Road District Tax Levy, the Amount of Taxes Levied upon the Township is determined solely by the Township Highway Commissioner.
While the Road District’s expenditures from the Real Estate Tax Levy are overseen by the Homer Township Supervisor and Board of Trustees, spending is controlled by the Highway Commissioner. The Homer Township Supervisor acts as the Road District Treasurer and the Township Clerk is also the Road District Clerk. The Road District’s Motor Fuel Taxes are levied by the State of Illinois. The Road District’s portion of Motor Fuel Taxes are then given to the Will County Engineer who controls the spending of those funds in Homer Township.
The Highway Commissioner’s compensation (salary and benefits package) is controlled and set by the Township Board of Trustees and is paid out of Township Funds, not Road District Funds. Salaries for the township officials are set 180 days before the next consolidated election and can not be altered by the Highway Commissioner or the Township Board 605 ILCS 5/6-207. The Highway Commissioner may at his discretion pay the township 50% of his salary from Road District funds per state statue. This is done sometimes to alleviate some of the burden from the township budget.
Intergovernmental Agreement with the Village of Homer Glen
The Homer Township Road District maintains the Roads, Road Signs, Drainage Systems and Sidewalks that are in the Road Right-of-Way within the unincorporated areas of Homer Township. Plowing, salting, tree trimming and parkway mowing are handled by the village in unincorporated areas under the direction of the Road District. The Current IGA between Homer Glen and Homer Township Road District is for the purposes of using each entities equipment and assets. This agreement enables both entities to work together and eliminates the need of purchasing equipment redundantly. We are still two separate entities working together to serve the needs of all the residents of Homer Township.
Funding to the Homer Township Road District for this maintenance is provided by the Real Estate Tax that is levied by the Homer Township Highway Commissioner. As per State Statutes, Road and Bridge Taxes levied within a Municipality by the Road District are divided equally at collection (on your real estate tax bill) by the County Collector with half going to the Road District and half going to the Municipality. This enables the village to operate their maintenance facility and the Road District to operate and maintain theirs. Roads maintained under this agreement like Gouger, 163rd, Bruce, ect, ect are utilized by all residents not just unincorporated residents and are very costly to keep maintained. That said, due to the great reduction in the miles of road serviced by the Road District the current Highway Commissioner (Brent Porfilio) will be reducing the levy to a more reasonable amount reflecting the current miles of road in December when the levy is prepared according to state statute.